OM

OM, or AUM, is a cosmic sound, the sound of creation, the first sound in the universe.  The Sanskrit word aum means all; being present everywhere, all powerful, and all knowing.  The symbol for AUM is made up of the three syllables A, U, and M, which can be interpreted many ways.  The three letters can be thought of as the beginning, middle and end or the past, present, and future.  They symbolize speech, the mind, and the breath or the dimensions of length, breadth, and depth. They represent the three deities: Brahma (creator), Vishnu (preserver), and Shiva (destroyer).  They correspond to the three genders: masculine, feminine and neuter and to the waking state, dream state, and dreamless sleep state.  The crescent and dot in the written symbol signifies clearing the veil or, in Sanskrit, maya of illusion, allowing us to see who we truly are and clearing our mind and senses.  The entire symbol is said to represent the Creator, all of creation, the living spirit, or the perfect man.  Chanting OM in a yoga class brings the class together, unifying the energy in the room, clearing out blockages, and stimulating the heart chakra.  When the chanting of OM begins a Yoga practice, it should also seal the practice to maintain balance.

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Follow Your Bliss

 I  have a superstition that has grown on me as a result of invisible hands coming all the time – namely, that if you do follow your bliss you put yourself on a kind of track that has been there all the while, waiting for you, and the life that you ought to be living is the one you are living. When you can see that, you begin to meet people who are in your field of bliss, and they open doors to you. I say, follow your bliss and don’t be afraid, and doors will open where you didn’t know they were going to be.

If you follow your bliss, you put yourself on a kind of track that has been there all the while, waiting for you, and the life that you ought to be living is the one you are living. Wherever you are — if you are following your bliss, you are enjoying that refreshment, that life within you, all the time.

Now, I came to this idea of bliss because in Sanskrit, which is the great spiritual language of the world, there are three terms that represent the brink, the jumping-off place to the ocean of transcendence: sat-chit-ananda. The word “Sat” means being. “Chit” means consciousness. “Ananda” means bliss or rapture. I thought, “I don’t know whether my consciousness is proper consciousness or not; I don’t know whether what I  know of my being is my proper being or not; but I do know where my rapture is. So let me hang on to rapture, and that will bring me both my consciousness and my being.

Joseph Campbell, The Power of Myth